Lake level still not at 75 feet, gates to close Dec. 31

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The Lake D’Arbonne drawdown is now scheduled to end with the year 2020. Yes, December 31 will not only close out this forgettable year, but it will also signal the end of the four-year drawdown, which began September 8. As of 5 p.m. Monday the lake was at 75.46 feet, according to www. darbonne.lakesonline.com.

“We submitted a request to Wildlife and Fisheries and DOTD to extend the drawdown to Dec. 31,” said Lake Commission Chairman Jake Halley. “It’s taken so long to get down to 75 feet and we’re trying to give homeowners as much opportunity as possible to get all the work done they had planned to do.”

The wait will also allow for the possibility of a freeze and that could help with some of the vegetation issues around the lake. After the new year, if the drawdown were to continue, it could get into the spawning season and affect the fishery.

“We’ve been able to accomplish a few projects we had scheduled,” Halley said. “We cleared out some underbrush around the Terral Island boat launch to make it accessible to people fishing off the bank in that area. Someone donated some manpower and removed some of the large boulders at Jake’s that were blocking the pull up area for boats. We’re trying to do some of the smaller, more cost-effective projects around the lake at the moment.”

There are more projects the Commission wants to finish before the Tainter gates are closed. So, residents have three weeks left before that happens and the water starts to rise.